Bad to Worse

8:20am on Friday morning.  I had only been at work a few minutes and the phone rang.  My Mom’s number popped up.  My stomach dropped and I froze.  I knew something was wrong.   I picked it up and my Aunt said that she had just called the ambulance for Mom and she was heading over to meet her at the hospital across the street.  Mom hadn’t been able to eat or drink and if she did she threw it up.  She was hardly able to get out of bed or sit up.  She was getting weaker and weaker after having chemo the day before.  Her bowels weren’t working.  The nurse had come that morning and Mom had just gotten up but could hardly walk.  So the nurse got Mom back to bed and ordered her to stay there.  She did her vitals and went out to talk to Auntie.  After some questions and answers whispered back and forth the nurse said, “Call an ambulance or she may not make it through the day.”  Auntie told me that I didn’t have to rush.  She would keep me updated.  My Mom’s other sister and daughter was coming to visit that day and it was too late to call and let them know.  So at least Auntie A would have some company and they could be with Mom as well.

I got off the phone and got as much work done as I could, called Pasith and daycare to make pick up arrangements because it was my day to pick up the kids after work.  I didn’t know what was going to happen or how long I would be gone.   I left work by about 11:30 and raced the 45 minutes to Steinbach.

Mom was still in the ER.  Both of my Aunts and my cousin were there.  It was comforting to have the extra family with us.  I went in to see Mom and she knew I was there but wasn’t really able to speak.  They had an IV pushing fluids in as fast as it would go and they were waiting to admit her.  The four of us took turns going back and forth for the next while between her and the waiting room.  The nurse that had seen her at home that morning came to check on her, which we really appreciated.  Mom finally got a room sometime in the afternoon.  She was so severely dehydrated but throwing up as soon as she ate or drank anything.  The nurse gave us some pudding to try around supper time.  I will never forget how scary it was to see my Aunt feeding my Mom because she was too weak to lift her arm to hold the spoon or sit up.  I had seen my Mom in rough shape but never this weak.  I stayed the night at my Mom’s with my Aunt.  She said I could go home but we were still so nervous about what was coming next.  I didn’t want to drive all the way home just to get called back again.  It was a very uneasy night sleeping at my Mom’s that night.  We both just waited for the phone to ring.  But thankfully it stayed quiet.

We spent the next day with Mom in the hospital and she got better as the day went on.  The IV fluids and nutrients were finally helping.  But she was still not able to eat anything and her bowels weren’t working.  They tested her white blood cells to see where her immunity was at and she was okay so far but they knew it was going to go lower before it went up so they were waiting for the reverse isolation room to move her into.  It was a room to protect her from the rest of the people with its own ventilation system.  I went home after lunch.  Pasith had the kids at work with him at the store.  Alex being 3 Pasith was anxious for me to pick them up, rightfully so.  I talked to Auntie that night and Mom had been moved.  The nurses had attempted giving her broth to drink a few times but she was still throwing up.  And they were talking about having to put the nose tube back in to empty her stomach.

I went back on Sunday morning for about 9am.  Mom tried broth again and hoped that it would stay down.  She did not want that tube again.  She still wasn’t getting out of bed except to go to the bathroom.  And they warned us that she wasn’t out of the woods yet.  It depended on if she could keep liquids down and how low her immunity dropped.  I left for home just after 4 with a very uneasy feeling.  But I needed to get home to my family. I had hardly seen them since Thursday night.  But my time at home was very short lived.

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